The annual Global Human Capital Trends report from Deloitte offers HR professionals and business leaders deep insight into the issues impacting today’s workforce, as well as trends to look for over the next three to five years. The 2015 research identified 10 significant trends that are expected to influence organizations around the world:
Developing leadership skills in current managers is certainly important, but the focus of this trend is on developing leadership skills for the managers of the future. Careful succession planning and continuous investment in training ensure organizations have qualified candidates when leadership positions become vacant.
2. Learning and Development
Qualified applicants for skilled jobs are becoming more scarce, and that trend is expected to continue. Companies that don’t plan ahead will find themselves without the human capital needed for hard-to-fill job openings. Investment in training and development tends to improve engagement, which leads to lower rates of attrition.
3. Culture and Engagement
Skills shortages mean fewer qualified candidates when positions open up, and greater focus on training doesn’t address the underlying issue of turnover. Smart leaders are supplementing enhanced workforce development with an emphasis on improving company culture, engaging employees, and retaining critical knowledge and skills within the organization through employee retention.
4. Workforce on Demand
Deloitte’s research shows that future staffing needs will require greater use of contingent workers, such as contract, temporary, and part-time staff. The most successful companies will be the ones that best identify where and when to place such workers, what skills will be required, and how to manage a world that requires excellent relationships between HR, management, and procurement.
5. Performance Management
When considered through the lens of employee engagement, it is clear that current performance management techniques like forced ranking are ineffective. Forward-thinking organizations are reconsidering their performance management process, instead focusing on simplified feedback tools and strengths-based assessments.
6. Reinventing HR
Historically, the HR function has revolved around advising on matters of compliance and handling complex employee relations issues. However, this is swiftly changing. HR professionals are uniquely positioned to guide the business in matters of recruiting, engagement, and retention, but only if the field as a whole realigns its strategic role within organizations.
7. HR and People Analytics
The new role of HR will require excellence in analyzing human capital data and making recommendations based on these results. Individuals lacking the skills necessary for this sort of innovation will quickly find themselves out of a job. This is a significant, pressing issue, as research shows a shortage of analytical skills in HR to be second only to a shortage of leadership skills.
8. People Data
Analysis of consumer data has been the foundation of the marketing field since the first marketing professional entered the business world. Surprisingly, similar analysis of employee data has not been a major topic. However, that is changing. The trend towards collecting data from human capital and using it to take action on key HR issues is setting best-in-class organizations apart from the competition.
9. Simplification of Work
New technology has given people unprecedented access to information, and innovation in communication has made it possible to work anytime, anywhere. However, workers are reaching their breaking point, trying to process too much information and taking too little time away from the office. Leading organizations are looking at options for simplifying the work environment to increase engagement through greater employee satisfaction.
10. Machines as Talent
As technology grows more capable of complex tasks, there are greater opportunities for skilled workers to concentrate on innovation. However, this requires a shift in strategy that focuses on collaboration between employees and their digital “colleagues.”
The business environment is changing, and traditional methods of management are quickly becoming obsolete. Successful companies will direct their resources towards addressing any gaps in these 10 trending topics.
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